Herbal teas are the epitome of transformation and growth from one source: Camellia sinensis
Six tea variations stem from this single plant:
The degree of oxidation during processing is what affects the chemical constitution of the plant's leaf, thus changing the flavor.
If you've had a few of the teas mentioned above, you've probably had a taste of the chemical difference.
A tea leaf primarily contains polyphenols (flavonoids), in conjunction with amino acids and theanine.
Heat triggers oxidation however other factors contribute to the plant's oxidation process; environment, time of harvest, plant disease, and farming practices are a few minor factors.
The Art of Tea making
The magic and uniqueness of tea blends occur from the oxidation degree of the tea plant. The timing of knowing when and how to harvest tea leaves to the mixing of the tea with other complementary flavors takes skill.
The chemical conversion aftermath of tea oxidation continues as you ingest tea. The primary chemical constitutes have beneficial effects on the body.
The perfect cup of tea
Combined with the health benefits of the plant's chemical makeup, a perfect cup of tea is what you make out of it. Often I get the question, "how do you brew tea?"
There are so many methods, I often encourage those to experiment and play with the plant and what it has to offer.
What is your favorite degree, I mean type of tea? Comment below!